GOSHEN, Ind. - The Goshen College volleyball team opens the Mid-Central College Conference tournament on Tuesday, facing the Indiana Wesleyan University Wildcats.
The Maple Leafs recently clinched their fifth-straight winning season and now sit at 17-14 overall. They finished the conference season with an 8-10 record, good for seventh place and the matchup with IWU.
The Wildcats, ranked 15th in the country, have lots of momentum heading into Tuesday night's match. They have won 31 of their 35 matches this season, including their last 13 and recently broke Taylor University's streak of 53 consecutive conference wins. The Wildcats are also undefeated at home this season and boast two victories over the Maple Leafs during the regular season.
Despite losing 1-3, and 0-3 in the two times the teams have met this season, coach Jim Routhier is confident that his team can go against the recent history and upset the Wildcats. "IWU is a well balanced team and can come at you from all positions. They have a tenacious defense that we will have to find holes in to be successful," Routhier said.
Goshen has been on a hot streak of their own since the last meeting between the two teams. The Maple Leafs have won nine of their last 11 are 11-4 total since the October 7 matchup . "We have a few surprises that they have not seen that we will pull out of our hat. We are playing our best volleyball of the year," Routhier added. "We will be ready to give our best performance in the tourney."
Maple Leafs to watch Tuesday night will include the balanced attack of kill leader, senior Kate Yoder (Mason, Mich) and the freshman trio of Melanie Meyer (Elkhart, Ind., Jamie Stack (Goshen, Ind.) and Sam Heberling (Mishawaka, Ind.). Sophomore setter Stacy Wyse (Archbold, Ohio) has also been playing very well as of late, and another freshman, Missy Mackowiak (North Liberty, Ind.) has been the Leafs' best defensive player, picking up 4.91 digs per set, good for second in the conference.
The match will begin at 7:00 pm in Marion, Ind. Tuesday night. The winner will go on to the conference semifinals scheduled for Thursday.
By: Nick Wesman
Sports Information Intern